The Amish culture has a very distinct and unique culture. Its rules, regulations, beliefs and take on life are very different from our norms. In this essay, I will explore the Amish culture. One of the things very central to an Amish life is their religion. Amish people have Christian beliefs and believe that living how God wants them to is essential. This way of life is called Gelassenheit. This is basically when they submit to God’s guidance and serve others.
Another thing that is important to the Amish culture is how men and women have their own set of roles. For example, the women make the food and clothes whereas the men do farm work and woodcraft. This separation of the jobs the men and women do is an old-fashioned idea and shows how the Amish live very much out of 21st-century life. A belief that is also is essential to the Amish is that whereas we live in a multicultural society, the Amish live separately. The Amish believe that living separately is essential for salvation.
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In the Amish culture, rejection of violence is a norm. They believe that strife and jealousy has no place in their lives and people that don’t oblige to their ways are often warned privately first then shunned after which (shunning being when you are forced to leave the community). Something central to Amish values is Gelassenheit, as well as being a massive part of the religious views. This idea also explains why the Amish reject such things as jewellery, make-up, hair styling, showy dress (this includes the use of buttons and hooks) and flashy coloured fabric.
All these things are the norms of Amish life. Comparing our ideas, beliefs, and views to the Amish’s beliefs and views is quite a contrast and makes theirs seem somewhat different and odd. There are many differences between the Amish culture and the British culture to which I belong. For example, whereas in the Amish culture, one thing very central to their lives is the love and commitment to religion, whereas, in the British culture, religion isn’t such a big part of our lives for most people, our significant commitments being to our families, work and etcetera.
Another thing that you can easily compare between the Amish culture and the British culture because we have equal rights as men and women, whereas in the Amish culture, the women are expected to cook and clean, and the men do the labour work. These Amish views are considered old-fashioned and sexiest to us, whereas in the Amish culture, they are perfectly acceptable and normal. In our culture, there is nothing wrong with a man being a chef or a woman being a mechanic, whereas in the Amish culture, this wouldn’t be acceptable.
Rejection to violence in the Amish culture is a big thing, whereas in the British culture, we try to condone it, but it is still part of our everyday lives. British culture is always getting murdered, stabbed, etc., whereas, in the Amish culture, this is almost unheard of. The deterrents for these in our societies are also different as in British culture; we have such sanctions as being arrested, put in jail etc. In contrast, in the Amish culture, the simple punishment is to be shunned.
One of the most significant contrasts between our cultures is the idea of Gelassenheit as in the British culture it is as wrong to be un-fashionable, not to wear jewellery and make-up, not to style your hair and to wear bright fabric. In contrast, in the Amish culture these things would be strictly looked down upon as they go against there idea of Gelassenheit, which means to give up any selfish idea and live how God wanted you to. So both the British and Amish cultures have their strengths and weakness, and they are both different in good and bad ways.
There is no right or wrong way to live, and neither the British nor the Amish can say they have got it right. In my opinion, they both have their highs and lows of being part of that culture. From learning about the Amish, I can say one of the things I think is good about their culture is how they work together and share. I think this is a strength as everyone gains from it rather than in the British culture everyone is more or less on there own.
A weakness of the Amish culture I would say is that they take the idea of Gelassenheit a bit too far in my opinion, especially the idea of not having such as buttons on clothes and such as these are in my opinion useless rules. In contrast, we are free to have proper fasteners and such on our clothes in the British culture. I also like the Amish culture’s negligence of violence, as I don’t think any culture needs violence to function. In my opinion, British culture would be a lot better if violence wasn’t an issue in everyday life for us.
I think a weakness in the Amish culture is the way they are so old-fashioned, with women and men being majorly discriminated against. Whereas in our culture, men and women have equal rights and have an equal place in society. Now after finding out about the norms and deviants of the Amish culture and finding out about their everyday lives and how they live compared to being part of the British culture I can say that there are aspects of their lives that I could relate to and would be quite happy to include in my life but there are such things that I find hard to relate to, understand, and would not want to be a part of.
After taking all things into consideration I wouldn’t swap places to go into the Amish culture and way of life my reasons for this decision is that everyday things to me such as computers, clothes, television, electricity and most of all music have grown a custom to my life and I think it would be hard to be without them although if I was born into an Amish culture I think it might be quite a nice life although you don’t have these things because you have never had them to know what it is like to be without them. To conclude I think that the Amish culture is interesting, unique and distinctive and certainly different from our way of life.